An excerpt from an Interview by Lonn M. Friend
For “The Rockstar Remedy”
I look at my band as a family unit. With that come all the joys and pain and suffering of any family unit. It’s highly loving and highly dysfunctional. You’re dealing with a multitude of egos as well. There’s a certain acknowledgment and awareness of the fact that, we’re all four of us absolutely crazy.
Crazy. To the point where when you’re dealing with ego and dysfunction and a pretty surreal existence, it serves no end to personalize conflicts. For instance, I can’t get mad at a cancer patient for needing chemotherapy. They have cancer. They have a sickness. In the same light, we can’t take each other’s idiosyncrasies personally because all four of us are out of our minds.
We don’t choose to be abnormal. We just don’t possess the ability to BE normal.
Since we are four individuals who don’t have the capacity to be totally normal with others, it doesn’t make sense to by angry with them if they can’t. We don’t choose to be abnormal. We just don’t possess the ability to BE normal. Especially after being in a band for this long, one of the ways of being aware of the true reality of things, is, that no matter how dysfunctional or crazy a situation gets, it IS going to pass. It will go away. There will be a day where I’m not thinking about it anymore.
Our crazy works because we removed self-destruction from the equation. I am totally comfortable and happy with the brand of crazy I possess. I’m not cruel to others, I don’t lie to others, I don’t cheat on people, and I don’t harm people intentionally. So whatever kind of crazy I have left is okay. And that goes for my band mates. If something gets personally pointed we have the intelligence to address it. And nine times out of ten it’s some kind of weird misunderstanding or clash of egos that can be easily resolved. I achieve that by simply taking responsibility of my end. “Hey, I’m sorry I reacted like that. When you said that thing it made me feel like this and my reaction was inappropriate.” There is a way to say, “I don’t like how you handled that,” without saying, “I don’t like how you handled that.” By simply cleaning it up. Just addressing my reaction to something can allow someone to illuminate his or her own actions. “Hey I’m sorry I reacted that way. I was frustrated.” Nine times out of ten if someone says that to me, I’ll respond with something like, “Oh yeah, well I was out of line by telling this to begin with so I understand your reaction.” And then it’s squashed.
You gotta be able to be aware of what’s being threatened in certain situations. In a band context, it’s usually the pocketbook or your self-esteem or ego. When it comes to matters of money, that’s business. I can’t permit emotion in business dealings. I can’t. I’ve gotten a lot less emotional about business. Here are the facts, here’s what needs to happen. That’s business, livelihood. Emotional stuff comes from human misunderstanding. In business, I’m a hard ass. No, that’s unacceptable. But there’s no reason to get emotional about it, so I don’t. It’s now where I choose to dispense my energy.
Photo by Fiona Bowie